Reflective spaces: Nurturing reflective practice during workplace learning

Narelle Patton, Elizabeth Anne Kinsella

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


    Given the centrality of reflective thinking to the development of professional knowledge, this chapter explores the complex nature of reflective practice as it relates to “space” during student workplace learning experiences. Reflective thinking is a complex and uniquely experienced phenomenon which has implications for how space is used in relation to reflective practice. This chapter considers the views of theorists who link reflection to professional knowledge including Dewey and Schön and reports findings from Narelle’s doctoral research relevant to ways of thinking about reflective practice. The research focused on the nature of clinical education and the way it framed physiotherapy students’ development of professional practice capabilities during clinical placements, through an analysis of the experiences and perspectives of physiotherapy students and clinical supervisors. Texts were constructed via use of focus groups, observation, semi-structured interviews and photo-elicitation. A full description of the research methodology is provided in Chapter 8. An interesting finding was that students indicated the value of varied “spaces” for reflection (reflective spaces) during fieldwork education. Reflective spaces were found to be complex and uniquely experienced by students. This chapter explores the significance of “reflective spaces” such as quiet spaces, social spaces and active spaces as they relate to reflection. Academics and workplace learning supervisors can assist students to identify and nurture their reflective thinking capabilities through exploration of the different spaces students use to engage in reflection.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationDeveloping practice capability
    Subtitle of host publicationTransforming workplace learning
    EditorsNarelle Patton, Joy Higgs, Megan Smith
    Place of PublicationLeiden, The Netherlands
    PublisherBrill | Sense
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Electronic)9789004366923
    ISBN (Print)9789004366916, 9789004366909
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Apr 2018

    Publication series

    NameHigher Education Horizons
    PublisherBrill Sense


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